BECHTELSVILLE, PA JUNE 22, 2008 . . . Craig VonDohren is having one of those seasons at Grandview Speedway in which he finishes in first or in the pits. On Saturday night the six time track champion brought the Felty Homes/Stauffer Construction No. 1c home first in the 30-lap Banes Roofing NASCAR 358 Modified stock car feature race. The victory was the third of the season for the Oley, PA racer.
VonDohren seemed to be able to work on the outside giving him the win. “We are taking it one race at a time,” was the comment from VonDohren when victory lane announcer Pete Knappenberger mentioned his good luck/bad luck type season.
In the companion 20-lapper for Late Model stock cars Bill Henning was able to wheel the family owned Henning Supermarket/WNPV-AM Radio No. 80 to his first win since July, 2003 when he won the Firecracker 40.
Ryan Beltz started on the pole in front of the 28-car starting field and set the pace for the first seven laps. In fact Beltz and John Willman put on quite a battle as they ran side-by-side in the early laps of the 30-lap main event for the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Modifieds.
At eight laps Willman was in front of the field and one lap later after a flurry of cautions VonDohren, coming from 10th starting spot, charged into second place.
The lead went to VonDohren on the 10th circuit of the one-third-mile, banked clay oval with Jason Hamilton now running in second.
With half the race in the record book Meme DeSantis, moving from ninth starting spot, was in second and closing on the leader.
As two thirds of the feature race was completed the battle for the victory was between VonDohren, DeSantis and Hamilton. Point leader Jeff Strunk, coming from 16th, was now in fifth and looking to challenge for the win.
VonDohren was able to stay in front as DeSantis’ charge seemed to falter and Hamilton was not able to make a run for the top spot.
At the finish of the 30-lap event VonDohren had a comfortable lead getting his third win of the season. Meme DeSantis (Temple) finished second followed by Jason Hamilton (Erwinna), point leader Jeff Strunk (Mohnton) and Kevin Hirthler (Boyertown).
With his fourth place finish Strunk continued his point lead while Doug Manmiller moved into second spot. Duane Howard, missing in action from Saturday racing at Grandview, fell to third place almost 500 points behind.
Bill Henning started on the pole and was in front at the drop of the green by starter Ray Kemp for the 20-lap Late Model feature. Henning was able to avoid a couple of cautions on the first lap and a multi car accident in the second lap.
At five laps Henning was being chased by John Giesler and Rick Todorow. With six laps in the record book Chuck Schutz, the Late Model point leader, was the victim of someone else’s mistake and crashed between the third and fourth turns. He was out for the night but still managed to hold on to the point lead.
With eight laps recorded Henning had a comfortable margin over Giesler with Todorow still running third.
Jon Kellner Sr., running in the top five, had the engine let go on his Watash Speed Shop sponsored No. 85AM and about the same time Bryon Sipe hit the wall putting him out of action.
At 13 laps Rick Todorow, Mike Kellner and Kyle Merkel tangled with all going to the pits.
Randy Stoudt was now mounting a charge and was right on the tail of Henning. At 15 laps Stoudt, a two time feature winner, tried to go under Henning in turn four and ended up backing his No. 118 into the guard rail.
For the final five laps Henning stayed conservative protecting his lead and finished with a comfortable edge over John Giesler (Aston). Third place went to four time Late Model champion Dean Stoudt (East Greenville) followed by Ed Trimbur (Boyertown) and Danny Snyder (Green Lane).
“It has been so long since I have been in victory lane I don’t remember the last win,” said the Lansdale resident while celebrating the first place finish.
A number of Late Model and Modified drivers went through the grandstands at intermission collecting donations for Late Model racer Eric Kauffman who was injured a few weeks back in a wild flip in his Late Model. He is recovering but will be out of work for about three months. The collection totaled $2039.
Qualifying heat wins for the Modifieds went to Danny Erb, Craig VonDohren, Tommy Scheetz Jr. and Jason Hamilton. The two consolation races were won by Don Norris Jr. and Terry Meitzler. In Late Model qualifiers wins were earned by Bill Henning, Brian Shuey and Chuck Schutz.
The Cornerstone Auto Sales Hard Charger awards, worth $50 to each driver, went to Jeff Strunk in the NASCAR 358 Modifieds going from 16th to 4th in the feature gaining 12 spots. In the Late Models Greg Hoffmaster earned the award with a charge from 22nd to 7th gaining 15 spots.
NASCAR 358 Modifieds will be in action on Saturday, June 28th at 7:30 p.m. along with the Late Models and Legends sponsored by Whelen. On Tuesday, July 1st at 7:30 p.m. the 410 sprint cars along with the 358 Modifieds will be the attraction.
The NASCAR Late Models are the featured attraction on Beer City Night as they race in their biggest event of the season, the Firecracker 40. The NASCAR 358 Modifieds will also be in action.
Admission for regular Saturday nights is $13 for adults, $5 for youngsters 6 thru 11 and under 6 are admitted free with a paying adult. There is always free parking on the speedway grounds and fans are invited to enjoy the wide array of concessions available at the track or are free to bring their food and refreshments.
Grandview Speedway is located on Passmore Road, just off Route 100, Bechtelsville, PA, 10 miles north of Pottstown. For information check in at www.grandviewspeedway.com or telephone 610.754.7688.
30-LAP BANES ROOFING NASCAR 358 MODIFIED STOCK CAR FEATURE FINISH: 1. Craig VonDohren 2. Meme DeSantis 3. Jason Hamilton 4. Jeff Strunk 5. Kevin Hirthler 6. Kerry Kratz 7. Doug Manmiller 8. John Willman 9. Tommy Scheetz Jr. 10. Mike Gular 11. Rick Schaffer 12. Danny Erb 13. Terry Meitzler 14. Shawn Reimert 15. Ryan Beltz 16. Stewart Friesen 17. Sean Merkel 18. Brad Brightbill 19. Don Norris Jr. 20. Jon Kellner Jr. 21. Ryan Godown 22. Brad Missmer 23. Todd Smith 24. John Tschudy 25. Jason Smythe 26. Todd Marburger 27. Mark Fehr 28. DNF Tom Umbenhauer
20-LAP BANES ROOFING NASCAR LATE MODEL FEATURE FINISH: 1. Bill Henning 2. John Giesler 3. Dean Stoudt 4. Ed Trimbur 5. Danny Snyder 6. Buddy Wharton 7. Greg Hoffmaster 8. Ron Kline 9. Brian Shuey 10. Jamie Undercoffler 11. Randy Stoudt 12. Jud Hendrickson 13. Mike Kellner 14. Mark Malcolm 15. Rick Todorow 16. Kyle Merkel 17. Jon Kellner Sr. 18. Bryon Sipe (Rest did not finish) 19. Dennis Pieper 20. Chuck Schutz 21. Ron Coverly 22. Bobby Wyatt 23. Harry Henning III 24. John Favinger 25. Matt Carter 26. Chad Rae